The Islamic State's West Africa Province (ISWAP), The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Boko Haram have been ranked among the top ten (10) deadliest terror groups in the world according to the latest Global Terrorism Index (GTI). The Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) in this year's GTI report, stated that the IPOB, ISWAP and Boko Haram were responsible for nearly 500 deaths in the year 2022.
GTI report placed ISWAP sixth (6th) followed by Boko Haram, on seventh(7th) on the global scale. While IPOB occupies the 10th position among the deadliest terror groups in the world.
According to the report, “The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), designated as a terrorist group by the Nigerian government in 2017, recorded their deadliest year in 2022. They were responsible for 40 attacks and 57 deaths in 2022, an increase from 26 attacks and 34 deaths the year prior."
The report also stated that “Boko Haram’s attacks almost halved within the last year, while deaths attributed to the group increased slightly from 69 in 2021 to 72 in 2022. This is the lowest number of attacks by the group for over a decade.
“Boko Haram’s decline has resulted in a substantial improvement in terrorism in Borno State, which experienced a decrease of 12 per cent in terrorism-related deaths when compared with the year prior. Attacks in the state also decreased from 91 to 48 respectively, a decrease of 47 per cent.
“The conflict between ISWA and Boko Haram that culminated in the death of Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau in May 2021, continued into 2022. Severe defeats, mass defections of operatives to ISWA, as well as counter-terrorism efforts by the Nigerian government and foreign military forces, have significantly weakened Boko Haram’s impact in Nigeria. As a result, ISWA has become significantly stronger and continues to expand its area of activity in north-eastern Nigeria and the Lake Chad region."
Reacting to this recent publication, the chairman of the Buhari Media Organisation (BMO), Niyi Akinsiju disclosed that the GTI has exonerated President Muhammadu Buhari's administration. He added that the listing of IPOB among the top 10 terrorist groups in the world showed that the Federal Government’s 2017 decision to designate IPOB as a terror organisation was right.
According to him "Boko Haram, ISWAP and IPOB have been designated as terror groups. But it is that of IPOB that has been contentious since 2017 when a Federal High Court proscribed it and described its activities as acts of terrorism.
“We invite Nigerians to note that while the Buhari administration has continued to treat IPOB as a terror group, some individuals and groups from southeastern Nigeria have a different view.
“So, now that GTI has listed it among the 10 deadliest groups in the world, alongside IS, Boko Haram, and Al-Qaeda, as well as outlined some of its recent activities that qualify as terrorism acts, we see it as a justification of the position of the Buhari administration.
“We also believe that it will go a long way in getting the international community to see things from the government’s perspective and enable it to collaborate with Nigeria to check the group’s activities."
Sitting at the top of the 20 deadliest terror groups in 2022 is the Islamic State (IS). They were responsible for 1045 deaths, 410 attacks and 644 injuries.